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Old 11-16-2010, 01:47 PM   #61
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It really depends on what time you get to your resort. If I was going to get to my resort early, I would definately do a park. I would also probably choose Epcot because it is open the latest. You could still see Illuminations and get back to your room by 10:30. Last time we went, we got in at 11pm, so no parks for us that day, but this time we get in at 10am. After check in and some freshening up, we are going to DTD for a late lunch and then going to MVMCP. Then the next morning we will grab breakfast at our hotel and head to Epcot. We are hoping to get there at opening, but if not by at least 9:30 so we can still get FP's for Soarin and Test Track. Then we will take our time during the day.

I think if you are getting there so early in the day, if you don't go to a park or at least DTD or maybe the Boardwalk, it is like wasting the day.
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Old 11-16-2010, 02:08 PM   #62
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real technical words, aren't they!
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If we arrive later we go to whatever park is open. If we arrive mid day we hit MK, have lunch ride what we can and then decide if we are staying there or hopping somewhere else for dinner. I do not pay premuim $$ to sit in my room. We don't swim much and don't partake in alot of activities at the resorts. We spend the majority of our time in the parks. Even if we just get in an hour or two on arrival day in the parks, that is enough for us to justify going to the parks.
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Old 11-16-2010, 05:45 PM   #63
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We fly JetBlue from NY to Orlando, and we leave out of Newburgh. They only have one flight, 8am, which puts us in Orlando 11ish. No way can we NOT hit a park that day. Too amped up! So we always hit MK, get our photopass pic, stroll Main St to the bakery and grab our frozen drinks, then to Space Mtn for the first ride. The only way we wouldn't take advantage of the first day in a park would be if our flight was later and/or we were on a limited budget and couldn't afford to waste half a day at a park. Otherwise, I say go for it and enjoy!
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Old 11-16-2010, 05:56 PM   #64
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What we do on our first day depends on a lot of things! The biggest factor is what time you arrive. If we can get there by the afternoon, I like to head to the parks! But this past time we got in at dinnertime. We had a reservation at Ohana and we were staying at the Poly. It was a fun way to start the time but next time I'll go to a park. We are in Mountain time zone so at 9 pm Florida time, it's only 7 for us. We have lots of energy and even getting to bed at 11 pm only feels like 9 for us.
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Old 11-16-2010, 08:44 PM   #65
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We always try to arrive by late afternoon. So after we check in to our resort we head over to DD. We have dinner over there and do tons of shopping. It really gets us in the disney spirit and ready for our first full day at the parks the next morning.
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Old 11-16-2010, 10:05 PM   #66
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Originally Posted by Thumper_Man View Post
DW and I own a timeshare off site. We usually don't get in until 5-6 in the evening. We fly in from the West. When our flight lands; we gather our luggage, pick up the rental car and drive on over to the resort.

After we check-in, we will usually unpack and get settled into our room. Then head on out for a nice dinner. This past trip, we went to Shula's. Yummy!

After dinner, we'll stop by a grocery store and pick up our groceries for the week. Head on back to the resort, put the groceries away and head on down to the pool and hot tub. Relax for the rest of the night and go to bed early. Get ready to hit the parks running the next day.
I forgot about grocery shopping. We're staying at a time share too - Marriott Cypress Harbour.

Your pix of Thumper are adorable. I wasn't planning to bother with any character meetings (we'll have 5 adults this trip), but when I saw the pictures of Thumper, it got me excited. Does Thumper meet people? If so, when and where? And does he talk? I loved his voice in the film.
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Old 11-16-2010, 10:39 PM   #67
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We are totally crazy!

We drive 15 hours straight through with 4 kids....we leave around 6 pm and arrive around 9am. DH and I take turns driving....although neither of us sleep the whole way....we just can't sleep while in a van. The kids sleep on and off though.

We arrive at our resort, pray we can get in our room ( every single trip so far we have ) toss everything out of the van...including the kids , toss it in the room, change really fast, then hop on a bus to the MK. Yep...we hit the parks after not even sleeping the night before! I told you we were crazy!

We are that family that hits rope drops and fireworks everyday. We like to go go go and the kids love it! Of course we slow down if the kids want to...but most the time they love to go as much as we do.
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Old 11-17-2010, 01:56 AM   #68
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On our day of arrival we head over to Downtown Disney for dinner and a movie. I love downtown disney because it sets the mood for the whole trip !
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Old 11-17-2010, 02:17 AM   #69
Half of the time we're rushing around to get things done last minute or we realize we're running behind so we need to catch up
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Old 11-17-2010, 02:36 AM   #70
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My partner and I are checking in for our first trip on the 22nd of Dec. but will be staying in another hotel the night before and once we get settled there, we're hitting up Downtown Disney and then dedicating the rest of our time visiting each park throughout our 8 day visit. We have a 10 day ticket but may only use 8 days. I figure we can spend two days at each park. Assuming we won't get to see everything but I'm sure what we will get to do and see will be a blast. Spending the 30th and 31st at Hollywood Studios for New Years, which is why we're cutting our 10 day ticket short. I can't wait!!
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Old 11-17-2010, 05:52 AM   #71
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No matter what Resort we are staying at during our vacation, we always spend the first night ( or two) at Shades of Green.
We take this time to take the Monorail around to the different resorts, doing a little shopping in each one, then a boat ride to The Wildreness from the boatdock at the MK for dinner.
A boat back to the Contemporary, monorail to the Poly and watch the Electric Light Parade from the Poly beach. Back to Shades of Green for pool time and the next morning, we are ready to check into our Disney Resort and begin our days in the parks.
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Old 11-17-2010, 08:41 AM   #72
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Earning My Ears
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Usually we arrive at about 10am and head to Downtown Disney. We walk around the shops, eat lunch, and go to Disney Quest. We head to our room around dinner time, eat at the resort, then make it an early night. It's a nice way to start our vacation...in the Disney atmosphere but still able to relax a little bit before the crazy park hopping starts.

This year our flight leaves at 6:30am. (Thankfully we live close to the airport!) We plan on heading to the parks right away. There is an evening EMH the night we arrive and a morning EMH the next day...and we plan on attending both. We might be crazy!
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Old 11-17-2010, 09:36 AM   #73
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Like most other posters, it really depends on what time we arrive.

I like to be on property in the early afternoon. We usually slum around the resort getting situated, hitting the gift shop, get something to eat, hit the pool and maybe a DTD stop.

The next morning, we hit the ground running. Up early for breakfast and to our chosen park by 9am.

If we arrive late in the evening, then it's find the room and get situated and sleep. Need our beauty sleep before a long day at a park the next day.

Gosh, I can't WAIT to get there!!!

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Old 11-17-2010, 09:47 AM   #74
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We usually arrive at POR around 11 am.
Check in,
move in,
freshen up
and then we take the boat to DTD and early afternoon cocktails and lunch at the bar at Fulton's.

Yum, some sparkling wine or a Mojito and a seefood sampler or a plate full with oysters. But I digress...
Then MK for the first MVMCP of the season.

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Old 11-17-2010, 09:53 AM   #75
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Originally Posted by mollybeasley View Post
What do you like to do on your arrival day?

I joined Tour Guide Mike and he recommends staying AWAY from the parks on your arrival day because you need your rest to get up early the next day. I agree with him that a lot of people don't get enough rest the night before a trip (sometimes I'm still doing laundry at midnight). But we're arriving at 9am and I don't want to waste the day. After the airport, check-in and a quick lunch, We could make it to a park by 12pm or 2pm at the latest. I was thinking we'd spend 4-5 hours touring a park, then pick up something fast for dinner on the way back at our resort, and get a good night's sleep.

Epcot and Universal are the lightest parks for the Monday (Dec13) we're arriving. Epcot seemed like an easy choice, but we'd miss the advantages of arriving much earlier or staying through to Illuminations. I was going to go with HS, but it's a Fantasmic night so the whole park will be busy, and I think we'd be too tired (and irritable) to put up with long lines or to stay till closing. I want to get everyone in bed early.

What do you think?

What do you usually do on your arrival day?
We do almost exactly what you said. We are usually checked into a hotel and at the Parks by 1pm on arrival day. We've done Magic Kingdom that day the last few trips, because that's what our little one likes. Before her though we would do Epcot. We never tour late that day and are usually in bed by 10pom on that first night, because we have an early Ressie the 2nd day. If we did not do the parks at all that first day, i would just be sitting at the resort miserable and feeling like I was wasting a day. Now if your flight does not get in until after 3pm than I would probably just hit DTD for an early dinner at HOB and then hit my resort.
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